Sudanese Court Overturns Death Sentence For Teen Who Murdered Her Rapist Husband

19-year-old Noura Hussein was sitting on death row on June 25th, 2018.

As it turns out, Noura murdered her husband who had raped her the night before and was attempting to do so again. It is important to note that child marriage is legal in Sudan and marital rape is not considered a crime.

According to a first-hand account given to CNN, Noura’s 35-year-old husband proposed to her through her uncle when she was only in the 8th grade.  Despite Noura’s refusal, the two were wed three years later.

“I don’t want to marry, I want to study,” said Noura.

After the wedding ceremony, the two went to stay in the “honeymoon flat,” where the teen locked herself in a room for days without food.  On the 9th day, her new husband’s relatives came in.

His uncle dragged Noura into the bedroom by her arm while his cousin slapped her.  They ripped her clothes off and she was held down by her legs and arms as her husband had his way with her.  The next day, her husband attempted to rape her again.  This time, Noura reached for a knife under the pillow and after a decent struggle, Noura managed to stab her husband to death.

Noura ran to her parents house for support but they turned their daughter over to the police.  Noura was originally given the death penalty but as of June 26th, 2018, the court commuted her death sentence and has given her a 5-year prison stay along with an $18,700 payment for “blood money” to the man’s family.

“While the quashing of this death sentence is hugely welcome news, it must now lead to a legal review to ensure that Noura Hussein is the last person to go through this ordeal,” said Seif Magango, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes. “Noura Hussein was the victim of a brutal attack by her husband and five years’ imprisonment for acting in self-defense is a disproportionate punishment.”

Noura’s lawyers are appealing her prison sentence as well as the payment owed to her rapist’s family.

#JusticeForNoura is now a campaign that is empowering the powerless in the country of Sudan.